Last night on national television, Husain Abdullah picked off Tom Brady and took the interception back 39 yards for a touchdown score. Upon reaching the end zone, Abdullah, who is a Muslim, knelt down, bent over, and delivered a prayer in celebration. The consequence was a 15 yard penalty to be enforced during the subsequent kickoff. After all, according to the rule book, players are "prohibited from engaging in any celebrations while on the ground." Technically, Abdullah did break that rule; however, the refs clearly did not understand the context of his actions.
For years, the NFL has been fine with Christan players, such as Tim Tebow, to deliver a brief prayer instead of the more traditional celebration. So, by not allowing the Chiefs' safety to pray to his faith, the league would have been setting a double standard for religious players throughout the league. So, as of this morning, the league has issued an apology, admitting that Abdullah should not have been penalized. Fortunately for Kansas City, the penalty had very little to do with the outcome of the game as the Chiefs took care of New England in a 41-14 romp.
In any event, Abdullah scored his second career touchdown in his sixth NFL season, while running back Jamal Charles scored three touchdowns in his return from injury. Meanwhile, the Patriots look like a shell of their former selves, and many experts woke up questioning the inevitable end of a dynasty headed by Tom Brady out in Foxborough, Mass. Do you think the NFL did the right thing? Should prayer be acceptable in any form as a touchdown celebration? Please comment below.
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